Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Taking a Break

Hidden Fortress will be hibernating until the 15th. See you then!

Monday, December 7, 2009


Just in time for the holy daze, Hidden Fortress is resurrecting quite possibly the single stupidest format that music has ever been released in -- the cassingle!

Eyescraper - Blank Tattoo (C10)

Spazzy noisewave goth pop. Cool kids making songs that sound like knives. Cardstock insert, edition of 25. $2 in USA, $4 worldwide.

MP3: Eyescraper - Blank Tattoo

...and also...

High Society - I Fed the Dog (C10)

Two dudes and some drugs making wicked vocal drone music. Economy of means leads to maximal effect. Cardstock insert, edition of 25. $2 in USA, $4 worldwide.

MP3: High Society - Astral Vodka

...and finally, a much-awaited second tape from Kid Wizard, full of new songs from outer space.

Kid Wizard - On the Edge of Forever (C30)

Computer-age scifi music, edition of 50, color cardstock insert. $5 in USA, $7 worldwide.

MP3: Kid Wizard - On the Edge of Forever

Get them all here.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

O.O.P. Tape Share #2

Dolphin Wizard - Prehistoric Animal Sanctuary
(Hidden Fortress, 2009)


On this classic C30, members of Kid Wizard teamed up with John Lilly and Dr. Raja Merk Dove to elucidate the underwater sounds of prehistoric oceans, as communicated by Atlantean glyphs using telepathic wave energy. Radical regressive mindscape sounds sucked straight out of the Triassic.

Friday, November 13, 2009

A Reason to Believe

New tapes are almost ready! New singles from Eyescraper and High Society, new epics from Kid Wizard, and maybe even some zines. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

O.O.P. Tape Share

Kid Wizard - To the Stars By Hard Ways
(Hidden Fortress, 2009)

1. Wastelands
2. She Lay Silent, in a Field, in a Dream
3. To the Stars by Hard Ways
4. In the Garden of Forking Paths

1. From Within Thin Cities
2. Kosmograd
3. Labyrinth of the Hibiscus Minotaur
4. False Memories

Epic synth music that takes cues from outer space, Italo Disco, Nu Age, and Giorgio Moroder's contributions to The Neverending Story.


Monday, October 19, 2009

Basement Baptism

"Flaming Lips managed to be boring and super exciting at the same time. Possibly a perfect representation of the state of contemporary independent music? Are we all doomed to make boring music with insane video backing it up? Letz fight it, no more festivals, only basements, make friends, dont make VIP tents." -- Willie from The Lonely Mountain

Sunday, October 11, 2009


Kid Wizard and Dolphin Wizard tapes are sold out! More soon.

EDIT: We'll post MP3s of the tapes soon for those who missed it... in the mean time, visit the Kid Wizard myspace or check out some of the other tapes we've got!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Neon Hearts

The Kid Wizard tape got a nice write-up from some of our favorite undergroundsters over at Cassette Gods. We've still got a couple copies lying around in case yr interested, but as is often the case with cassette reviews, the object itself is pretty much gone by the time anybody sits down to write about it.

A few emails from people interested in trading tapes -- for the record, we are totally down with this. Yr money isn't worth anything anymore anyway! Just send us an email and we can set up some sort of anti-capitalist trade agreement.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Friday, August 14, 2009

New Song from Eyescraper

Kind of like goth, but even less cool.

Eyescraper - Blank Tattoo

Monday, June 1, 2009

What's baking?

Currently available cassettes:

Kid Wizard - To The Stars By Hard Ways
Eyescraper - Skull Magnet
Loud Cloud / Moon Mesa - Split CS

Coming Soon:
Dolphin Wizard - S/T
Eyescraper - Strange Days
Slurpee Stains - ???

Out of Print:
Moon Mesa - Rock Formations
Stylebiter - Lazer Friends

All cassettes are C30 for the time being! Maybe we'll switch it up in the future.

Monday, May 25, 2009

It doesn't matter what kind of shoes you wear.

Or what your haircut is. Everything is awesome.

Loud Cloud/Moon Mesa split CS is almost out of the chute. To celebrate we're releasing the entire Moon Mesa B-side, which is a single 15-minute long polymorphic noise decomposition, as a crappy 128kb MP3! For a better (or really, different) quality recording you'll just have to check the tape when it comes out.

Moon Mesa - Transmission 1-4

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Thursday, April 30, 2009


These guys come out May 1st.

EYESCRAPER - Skull Magnet
C30, edition of 30

Eyescraper is ascetic junk noise balladeering with home-made instruments and direct-to-tape recording. Growing up weird in the Midwest before translocating to hazy locales on the West Coast, psychic dualism and the struggle to fill spiritual voids with meaningful noise. Foci are ritual therapy, gender confusion, and alienated lonerism.

Instruments: voice, Ibanez electric bass, Lyon & Healy lever harp, DR-202 Dr. Sample, IKEA-brand cookware, and Sony variable-speed tape recorder

KID WIZARD - To the Stars by Hard Ways
C30, edition of 30

Kid Wizard is the pseudonym of Will Grizzly, a Bay Area DIY synth cosmonaut who writes anachronistic soundtrack music for Soviet-era science fiction films that never existed. Themes that inspire his work include space travel, the transhuman endeavor, and the passage of time as a form of personal loss.

Instruments: fake moog synthesizer, fake mellotron, Roland drum machines, tape hiss

Friday, April 17, 2009


Apparently I missed some good shows via Japanther and Inca Ore, but it's because I've been working on awesome stuff like this. ETA June.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Recent Show Reviews


Both of these bands are hella gimmicky, with elaborate stage shows and song titles that rely heavily on cheap puns. Possibly they are intended to appeal more to teenagers than to people my age (~25), but I think that's underestimating the average teenager rockist consumer. Anyway, my friend likes this stuff and he dragged me along.

Peelander Z is three (four? five? do backup dancers and offstage guitarists count?) Japanese natives living in NYC and making trashy punk rock inspired by Godzilla and the Power Rangers. The songs are two-chord stompers that really only exist as an excuse for stage diving and wacky animal costumes. That said, it was pretty entertaining, but not really in a way that made me want to join in. I'd rather watch it on youtube, you know?

The Phenomenauts are an Oakland band which I think has played Warped Tour, and that's probably where my friend knows them from. The name and that fact alone can probably paint a better image than any description I can provide. They do a kitschy "psychobilly in outerspace" thing which never really gets campy enough to be fun, it's just some 200bpm apolitical retro hetero nonsense that I can't really feel and can't get into. The lasers looked expensive, but they didn't bother to tune their instruments, and the whole thing was just a mess.

NO AGE and TITUS ANDRONICUS @ The Rickshaw Stop

Got into this one free through an online promotion for some D.O.A. alt-indie music portal, so the crowd was a little weird, a lot of teenage "bros" and general creepsters. Can't say I loved Titus Andronicus, as the main impression I came away with was that they need to turn down the mic on the harmonica and ditch one of the guitarists. If I'm going to die of tinnitus, I don't want to be during some half-assed indie blues progression.

(Maybe the lyrics are good, I couldn't hear them.)

No Age put on a good show but it definitely wasn't the venue for them. Too much space, too much noise. They really belong in a basement. But they tried hard and brought the energy and harassed the crowd for just standing around and looking like the douchebags they were. By the end of the show everybody was moving around and having a good time.

MOUNT EERIE and WHITE FANG @ Million Fishes

There were some other bands too but I don't remember who they were/wasn't listening when they played. The show was in a basement behind the actual Million Fishes gallery, which is cool because you almost never get to go to actual basement shows in the bay.

White Fang was the first band I saw, some teenage posi hardcore outfit from Oregon who played a 10-minute set that totally worked for me. I didn't know kids still did this kind of stuff. Mount Eerie was just Phil Elvrum with a guitar, playing by himself in the corner of the room. He's really working the loner regression metal jams right now, it's a style that I don't think anybody else can touch. The chord progressions don't make much sense and the songs end abruptly, but it all feels right for what he's singing about. The lyrics are very domestic/natural, sometimes about animals or houses or dying alone, totally engrossing and awesome.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Nu Age

Give me back my Ouija board.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Welcome to Outer Space

Rockets - Space Rock (1978)

Space - The Magic Fly (1977)

Celebrate with Pagan Gods

Hey everybody, it's spring!

And I just ordered some tapes from Gift Tapes. Let you know what I think when they get here.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Berkeley, CA

Music in our backyard seems to mostly consist of amateur guitar acousmatics and maddening thrash/ska hybrids. 924 Gilman Street we blame you. The worst music in the world seems like it could be the best thing, but then it isn't, and this is the delineation between idea and reality. If it all took place in basements I'd probably be feeling it more, but nobody has a basement around here.

Anyway we keep on pumping/dumping. Kid Wizard's C30 is almost officially done (promos ship next week, or as soon as we get the cassette labels printed). But go ahead and pre-order if you can feel the outer space vibes pulsing in your location. Eyescraper's "Skull Magnet" is recorded and just waiting for the dubbing and final tracklist, and after that comes Stylebiter and then Slurpee Stains and then probably something else.

Kid Wizard - Waste Lands

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Do Not Understand

Is that the point?

I want to explode in one thousand different ways into different organisms and mindstates/colors, the flavors of artificially colored high fructose corn syrup, buying groceries on an astral plane, neck and neck with stasis. Is there anything more boring maybe not. People regress to the mean and the only thing worth doing is solipsism, not socialism. There is no such thing as a transcendental humanist.

Living in a hippie commune in a bubble-wrapped timewarp where everyone is a teenager in love. Truth ends at age twenty-two, fear begins. How to fight/how to fall. In public and in private.

(Ambiguous stimuli.)

Leave the rest for the dust mites.

Monday, March 2, 2009


Aren't they all? But there's some cool stuff over at Cassette Gods, don't feel so down.

Also visit:
- Dead Angel
- 20JFG
- Mudd Up
- MonkeyAbout

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Free Fridays: The Slurpee Stains

The Slurpee Stains can't tell the difference between feeling good and feeling bad. They play fuzzy pop songs that are convulsive and propellant and sometimes tragic, with a sort of a dayglo New Wave anxiety-core aesthetic, but buried in waves of comforting/terrifying noise. They currently have a split cassette with bit-rockers Microcosmos in the works, more news as things progress.

1. For The Grave
2. Spunk Lessons
3. Orange Sun
4. Land Waltz

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Punks are scary but we wish we were them.



Someone (I think it was Blastitude) called the Replacements "Heartland Rock" recently, and I super don't get that. What is a heartland anyway? Doesn't a word like that imply conservatism, family values, and an overdeveloped sense of nostalgia? I guess the Replacements did get pretty sappy and nostalgic as they grew up. But for a couple albums at the beginning of their run they were the messiest of beer-punk teensploitationists.

The Replacements - Customer (1981)


Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Totally Irrelevant

I'm really into being really into things. Sometimes it's unavoidable.

Sonic Youth - Youth Against Fascism (1992)


Monday, February 23, 2009

Welcome to the Hidden Fortress

Hi All,

Welcome to the Hidden Fortress Tapes Super-Hidden Blog of Tapes and Things. We'll be posting MP3s and news about cassettes and stuff.


See you again soon,